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I became aware of Baptism’s existence about a year ago, when I first listened to this album. I was amazed by its sound and quality so after sometime I returned to see if my opinion would remain the same. Truth is I enjoyed this even more than the first listens and it definitely has stood the test of time.
“The Beherial Midnight” doesn’t offer any innovative or groundbreaking elements in the field of black metal. In order to describe the music, I’d categorize it as similar to that of Horna, old Behexen or even Azaghal. It’s strictly raw and primitive but it exemplifies how black metal should be played. Through its 9 tracks, the dark and melancholic melodies create such strong emotions that can’t go unnoticed. The warm guitar tone and the excellent riff work balances between tremolo picking and some nice tempo breaks that prevent this whole attempt from sounding boring. Also Lord Sarcofagian’s voice fits very well to the music because it sounds very grim and miserable. At times I thought that I was listening to a dying man that was spitting evil curses to the world and wishing for total death.
If you see beyond the theoretically raw production, you will see that the balance of the instruments is admirable and each one of them can be heard very clearly. Even the bass is audible, while the drums generally play at a medium tempo, with some black ‘n’ roll changes and fast outbreaks. Lyrics are available only in 5 tracks and they’re talking about Satanism and devotion in general, while Tyrant Werwolf of Satanic Warmaster has contributed to their writing as well.
As far as I’m concerned, this album has become a collector’s item after all these years and it’s really hard to find in a reasonable price. But this makes total sense for me, since we’re dealing with a Finnish black metal masterpiece and it’s a shame that no one has made a re-release yet. So if you stumble upon this work by any means, buy it without second thought and you won’t regret it. Just push the play button and let the beherial moon possess you...
Originally written for: The Lair of Storfeth
It cannot be denied that Norway and Sweden are no longer the countries that rule the BM spectrum. Another country has evidently taken over from them, and is not likely to relinquish the mantle of power in the near future. For those who have yet to guess which country I'm referring to, it's Finland, of course!
It's precisely BAPTISM's "THE BEHERIAL MIDNIGHT" that convinced me to explore the Finnish BM scene and that, ultimately, represented my first step towards acknowledging Finland's musical supremacy in this field. In 2002, when this CD/LP was released, it took the undeground BM scene by surprise. I can hardly imagine anyone listening to this album and not being blown away by the seemingly boundless number of brilliant riffs and melodies! Talk about inspiration! And this is where BAPTISM prevail over the majority of, let's admit it, average bands that make up most of today's Black Metal scene. "THE BEHERIAL MIDNIGHT" is simply a voyage into the depths of obscure beauty, with all that it could possibly offer. It sounds mostly like second wave BM but does not turn its back on the first one either. It combines both in fact to produce an ensemble that won't leave any real fan cold!
I could never praise "THE BEHERIAL MIDNIGHT" sufficiently. It gives us the best of what BM is all about. Recommended, you ask? I personally own both the LP and CD releases. Is that enough as answer?